Trade War Farm Aid

In this Thursday, June 20, 2019, photo, farmer Bernard Peterson leans on a tractor at his farm in Loretto, Ky. When the Trump administration announced a $12 billion aid package for farmers struggling under the financial strain of his trade dispute with China, the payments were capped. But records obtained by The Associated Press under the Freedom of Information Act show that many large farming operations easily found legal ways around the limits to collect big checks. At Peterson's farm, eight members of the family partnership collected a total $863,560 for crops they grow on over 15,000 acres in seven counties, including wheat and corn used at the nearby Maker's Mark bourbon distillery. Peterson said that it didn't make up for all their losses at a time when it was already hard to be profitable. The $1.65 per bushel aid payments for soybeans fell well short of losses he estimated at $2 to $2.50 per bushel, factoring in the loss of the Chinese market that took years to develop. (AP Photo/Dylan Lovan)

MINNEAPOLIS — When President Donald Trump's administration announced a $12 billion aid package for farmers struggling under the financial strain of his trade dispute with China, the payments were capped. But many large farming operations had no trouble finding legal ways around them, records provided to The Associated Press under the Freedom of Information Act show.

The government paid out nearly $2.8 million to a Missouri soybean-growing operation registered as three entities at the same address. More than $900,000 went to five other farm businesses, in Indiana, Illinois, Tennessee and two in Texas. Three other farming operations collected more than $800,000. Sixteen more collected over $700,000. And the data list more than 3,000 recipients who collected more than the $125,000 cap.

(Copyright © 2019 APG Media)

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